Toaru Majutsu no Index:NT Volume4 Chapter.37
Profound Destruction. ﾙ9ﾆ1bｶｹrｻ991ﾏ
Utterly overwhelming pain tore Kamijou Touma’s consciousness from him the instant his right hand was crushed. His unconscious form dropped to the floor with surprising ease. It was much worse than having his hand cut off with a knife. An unbelievable amount of fresh blood spewed from the mangled wound, but the boy’s body no longer moved. He did not writhe in pain or fear or even let out a cry.
The no longer needed right hand was tossed to the floor.
Kumokawa Maria was unable to move.
The great amount of red blood made her feel dizzy.
But before that, the one-eyed witch who had suddenly appeared was simply too frightening. This was different from Dáinsleif. The feeling was different from that easily understandable surface fear. It slipped into the deepest portions of people without them noticing and the next thing they knew, strength had left their limbs.
It was like how domestic violence carried out behind locked doors was accepted as the normal routine even by the victim.
It was like the climax of a discussion about who to eat first while in a small snowed in cottage when there seemed no hope of rescue in the near future.
It may have been described as a great fear, but it was not something that could be rejected on the surface like it was a flame that you reflexively pulled your hand out of. This fear permeated you so deeply that it created a cycle that at a normal time you would immediately realize was strange. Just by standing there, the one-eyed witch could likely even destroy the morals in the hearts of all those around her.
For example, if an army was going to fight that one-eyed witch, it was possible the soldiers would get into a fight over who would be forced to stand before her and they would end up killing each other.
Meanwhile, the one-eyed girl grabbed Marian’s Dáinsleif without even giving Kamijou another glance. The magic sword was still in its scabbard and she crushed it in her grip, scabbard and all. It broke apart. It was as if the weapon was made of chocolate. When Dáinsleif fell to the floor, it lost its golden glow. It then rusted over which was impossible for pure gold. Even Kumokawa Maria who did not know much about the powers outside of Academy City could tell the magic sword had completely lost its power.
“Honestly, why would she prepare something this dangerous? It may be a trait of the Dvergr, but why does she have to take the organization of Gremlin so lightly? …This ruins everything. I wish she would have thought about why I was holding back so much.”
She destroyed it because it was dangerous.
That was the exact thought process as Kamijou Touma. In that case, she could have just left it to Kamijou, but instead she had carelessly destroyed him.
She probably had no reason.
She had spotted him first, so she had destroyed him first. When the other problem remained, she had destroyed it too. That was her thought process as she wielded that great power. No firm direction could be felt in it. Or perhaps, it was not needed to be felt.
It was the ultimate form of power wielded as an individual.
No thought was given to what effect it would have on the future.
“Othinus.” The one-eyed witch named a god. “Unlike a certain failure, I am a pure Magic God. If that is not enough for you to understand, my words are wasted on you. You should just give up on understanding.”
Was there even any intent behind those words? Or did she just say that in her spare time, on a whim, out of boredom, because she felt like it? That was the same way that she killed people, overlooked people, or saved people. It was so simple. It was simpler than a game of king of the castle. In fact, it was so simple that it actually made her true nature impossible to see.
Suddenly, something changed.
Something invisible blew out from the crushed remnants of Kamijou Touma’s right wrist. With a roar, it shot toward Othinus without taking any real form.
“…Is that all?”
Othinus’s bloody hand grabbed something.
The one-eyed witch tilted her head to the side in confusion.
“It seems you produced decent results during the final stages of World War III, but is this all I find when I open the lid?”
She carelessly crushed it.
The invisible power writhed and seemed to try to flee from Othinus. But it was too late. She poured more strength into her bloody fingers and this time the invisible power was torn apart and disappeared into thin air.
The violence was overwhelming.
The violence was enough to hold back that unknown power while it was still unknown.
The one who produced that violence gave no thought to the effects it would have on her surroundings.
Othinus slowly held out her bloody hand.
She grabbed the back of Marian Slingeneyer’s overalls as the girl lay collapsed and unmoving. Othinus then forcibly lifted her up.
“I’m going to the effort of collecting you, so make sure to be of some use,” she muttered before turning her back on Kumokawa Maria.
But then she froze in place.
The Magic God had overlooked Kumokawa Maria on a whim, but now had she decided to kill her on a whim?
Kumokawa Maria thought that was so, but she was wrong.
“…Oh, it’s the failure.”
Immediately after Othinus’s voice rang out, another person was now there.
At some point, a blond young man had come to be in the ring.
There was nowhere he could have been hidden. There had been no sign of him using Academy City esper powers. And yet that blond young man stood there. It was not that he had suddenly appeared. Kumokawa Maria could not put it that way. She had no idea when he had arrived.
And the strangest thing of all was that the blond young man was facing Othinus who had wielded such great power.
“Magic God,” he spat out rudely. It was as if he were declaring himself to be opposed to the one he named thusly. “I am not here for you this time.”
Most of the chain-link had been destroyed but the blond young man still pointed toward the mainly useless exit of the ring.
“Hurry up and leave with the Dvergr. I have business with that Imagine Breaker.”
Othinus remained silent for a bit.
A tremendous explosive noise burst out between Othinus and the blond young man.
Actually, it was not just one. Thousands and tens of thousands of explosive noises burst out at such short intervals that they all sounded like a single whole.
However, Kumokawa had no idea what had happened.
She saw no visual phenomenon.
She knew only one thing.
That blond young man could rival that Magic God named Othinus.
“Give it up. This will settle nothing,” said the young man.
Most likely, Othinus had only been testing him. After a few seconds, the explosive noises suddenly stopped.
“Do you think a mere failure can stand before a pure Magic God?” spat out Othinus.
“No, I don’t think I can win. If I could, I would have killed you long ago. I will abstain from killing you as long as I have no means of doing so. That’s all there is to it.”
“…So you’ve come to be killed by me?”
“It isn’t that either. You know that. You may be a Magic God, but you are not perfect. Or rather, you are too perfect and that gives you a troublesome characteristic. You know that and that is why you have put together this exaggerated plan to free you from that dilemma.”
“Infinite possibilities sounds good, but that gives you both the possibility of success and the possibility of failure. I suppose it’s something like matter and antimatter. For everything, you must hold the possibility for success and the possibility for failure. No matter how much power you gather, you have a 50/50 chance. If you think of it like Russian roulette, it’s like taking a shot with three bullets loaded. Let’s be honest, Othinus. While you possess the power to destroy the world, you also have a fifty percent chance of losing to a child in a game of rock-paper-scissors. It’s almost a miracle that Kamijou Touma has lost twice. His misfortune must really be something. But given this condition, you cannot just wield your full power at random. You want to find a way to control those possibilities. Wanting to increase your possibilities for victory is natural, but when your possibilities for failure increase too, you need to find some way of dealing with that. 50/50 is the most troublesome of all.”
The young man then pointed toward his own chest with his thumb.
And he spoke.
“I am an impure example that stopped at the point where I ‘should have’ become a Magic God. In other words, I lose to you in overall power, but I am freed from that 50/50 dilemma. After all, I am imperfect. Unlike your perfect balance, my odds of victory have a deviation.”
“And you think that will let you win?”
“No, I already told you I can’t. If I could, I would have killed you long ago,” said the young man before smiling and continuing. “But that doesn’t mean I don’t have an idea as to how to push you back just a bit. It’s all thanks to how you so carelessly crushed Kamijou Touma’s right hand.”
“You don’t mean…?”
“World War III was started by a man who held the power to save the world. He had the power to save the world, but could not save the world without a right hand to output that power into the world. That was why he used various methods to obtain that special right hand. That’s right. You cut off the right hand that only one of can exist in the world.”
A great metallic noise came from above.
It was from one of the pillars used to support the chain-link fence surrounding the ring. A man wearing red had appeared atop it at some point. His right arm had been severed at the shoulder. Growing from there was an unnatural distortion of space that looked as if sugar water had been mixed in.
“Fiamma of the Right with his power to save the world. And me, a man who can wield the power of a Magic God even if it is impure. …Now then. What will you do in response to these changing possibilities? Fifty percent, Othinus. I believe you have even odds of just forcing your way through this.”
“Hmph,” snorted Othinus.
While holding Marian Slingeneyer in one hand, she turned her back on the young man. She was going along with her opponent’s suggestion.
But after taking a few steps, Othinus suddenly stopped. She carelessly tossed Marian to the side.
“No, I guess I’ll kill you,” she said.
With a great roar, something beyond Kumokawa Maria’s understanding blew about.
Natural Selector, the one who determines natural selection. On that stage where countless contestants, Kiharas, Gremlin, Kamijou Touma, and Marian Slingeneyer had all fought, a battle began that had the same theme but was on a completely different level.
In a small hospital in northern Europe, lights out had passed so normally no visitors would still be there. However, someone other than the usual patient was in one of the private rooms.
She was Brunhild Eiktobel.
She was a rare woman that had both the inborn condition from Norse mythology of being a Valkyrie and the inborn condition from Christianity of being a Saint.
Those two powers worked against each other, so her nature and power switched out over a set period of time like the waning and waxing of the moon.
As stated before, she was not a patient.
The patient in the room was a boy of about ten who was lying on the bed.
“I want some cocoa.”
“You can’t. You already brushed your teeth.”
“But I can’t sleep like this.”
“Then try counting sheep in English.”
If anyone else had been there to hear that conversation, it would have sounded peaceful enough, but Brunhild had once carried out a magical terrorist attack on a global scale to get revenge against the ones who had harmed the boy. In the end, she had been defeated by the Anglican Church and imprisoned, but her cooperation during World War III had gotten her charges dropped. At that point, she had finally been reunited with the boy.
She had sensed the end of the peaceful time.
She casually brought her left hand up against her right wrist and pulled a piece of wood the size of a stamp from a loop of string hidden in her sleeve. The surface had runes branded into it and Brunhild muttered something under her breath while gripping it in her hand.
It was the seal of sleeping.
In Norse mythology, it was said to have been used by Odin to seal a rampaging Valkyrie, and as the name suggested, the string of runes forcibly caused sleep.
The effects came quickly.
The boy lost consciousness and was quickly invited to the world of dreams. Brunhild left the piece of wood on his forehead.
“You do not need to see what comes next. I hope you at least have pleasant dreams,” she whispered and fixed his blanket.
She then stood up from the folding chair next to his bed.
She turned around.
At some point the door to the room had been opened. Someone stood beyond it. It was a tall woman. She was wearing a skintight riding suit and a jacket was tied around her waist by the sleeves. However, she had a Western sword on her back and a hair decoration with bird feathers above her ears. She was artificially given the same impression as Brunhild.
Brunhild Eiktobel frowned slightly.
“Come to think of it, there was a magical experiment to turn people into Valkyries after birth by distorting the important parts of the people similar to changing one’s blood type with a bone marrow transplant. I had heard the experiment was stopped, but I suppose a new generation was created at some point.”
The artificial Valkyrie sucked in air to give some kind of response.
However, no words came out.
Immediately afterwards, Brunhild’s kick struck the artificial Valkyrie in the middle of the gut.
It went well beyond blowing her away.
She was splattered against the wall. As if the artificial Valkyrie’s body had been a water balloon filled with ketchup, something dark red splattered against the corridor wall outside the hospital room. When it was possible some harm might come to that boy, Brunhild did not hold back. In all seriousness, she would unhesitatingly make an enemy of the six or seven billion people that made up the world.
And her decision had not been wrong.
The surface of the dark red stain on the wall moved. It formed a giant face. The richly colored viscous liquid vibrated to form a voice to match the moving mouth.
“Our information was correct.”
She was not yet dead.
The artificial Valkyrie would likely reform into her previous shape and begin anew.
Not even Brunhild knew how such a horrible thing could be pulled off.
“The main problem is that boy. If we can capture him, we can freely draw out all of Brunhild Eiktobel’s secrets.”
Ignoring any kind of strategy, Brunhild merely reacted to that comment and silently walked out the door of the hospital room.
And then she realized something.
To the left and right in the corridor were over ten people. The artificial Valkyries were waiting for her.
“Thanks for waiting,” she muttered before kicking up a sword on the ground and catching it in one hand. She did not even need to draw the sword. She muttered something under her breath and the sharpness of blade sliced through the scabbard from the inside. It was the one handed sword the artificial Valkyrie she had defeated first had dropped. Brunhild normally preferred a heavy claymore sword that could smash the opponent, armor and all, but it was no time to be picky.
In fact, she had no guarantee that she would survive.
She might have been able to win in a pure fight to the death, but the artificial Valkyries knew Brunhild’s weakness. If attacks came from over ten different directions at once while she had to protect that boy, the difficulty grew considerably.
And Brunhild would unhesitatingly choose the boy if only one of them could survive.
That was why it was possible that she would lose to an opponent she should be able to defeat.
When Brunhild 'drew' her sword, the artificial Valkyries also drew their swords in unison.
That was when something slammed through the hospital corridor with the force of a dump truck.
A different group of artificial Valkyries that had been waiting outside had been blown away and sent rolling along the floor.
Someone had thrown them with incredible strength.
All focus was turned in the direction they had come from. At the end of the dark corridor (given the silence despite the great commotion, the doctors and other patients must have had some kind of magical spell cast on them), the faint light of the emergency exit sign provided enough illumination to see someone standing there. The strange woman wore a rough shirt and jeans as well as a work apron. Overall, this gave her the image of a maid. Also, Brunhild could detect a similar sense in the woman to herself. But not from the Norse side of things. It was a Christian sense.
“…A Saint? What number are you?” said Brunhild.
The blonde maid smiled and scratched at her head.
“I forget. I think it was above you, though.”
“Why are you here?”
“I like simple things. Whatever I think of you as a whole, your desire to protect that which is important to you is not wrong. I hate those who target that desire for their own benefit. That is all.”
The artificial Valkyries changed their formation. In order to quickly deal with two enemies they changed the direction of the edge of their swords.
However, the blonde maid only smiled and said, “And I’m not the only one that feels that way.”
It was immediately after that.
It came from the opposite direction down the corridor. After a tremendous rumbling noise, more artificial Valkyries came flying from beyond the darkness. A short girl appeared, walking down the corridor. She held a wand in her hand and was the boss of a modern Western magic cabal.
She was Leivinia Birdway.
“I made a reasonable investment. I have to make sure I get some kind of returns. I’m glad I have some proper Norse members here. Unlike with Cendrillon or Saronia A. Irivika, it looks like I might actually get some valuable information out of this,” the girl said while spinning around her wand. “I may not be one to talk, but I’m starting to get pissed at how unrestrained your actions are, Gremlin. So how about you keep me company? I can use you to relieve the stress you caused.”
The artificial Valkyries stopped moving for an instant.
It looked as if they were hesitating over the change in the situation, but they were not.
Brunhild Eiktobel was the first to realize it.
“I see. So that’s it.”
She looked up at the ceiling and ignored the building materials to focus on the sky above.
She looked at the flying assassin up there.
“There are still a few left. And they have gotten into my head. They drew my attention with the fighting to lower my mental defenses to draw out information on Gungnir.”
That was the spear used by Odin in Norse mythology. It was the symbol of the power that god possessed. Brunhild Eiktobel had once used that ultimate Norse spiritual item in her revenge for the sake of a certain boy.
“It doesn’t really matter,” said the blonde maid simply. “We can just take some hints about Gremlin in exchange. Afterwards, we can head to their headquarters and crush them to get back what they stole.”
The result was clear as day.
As Magic God Othinus leisurely left Baggage City, her expression was nonchalant despite the -20 degree blizzard.
She spoke to the person walking next to her.
“Have you had a chance to cool your head?”
Marian Slingeneyer remained silent.
She was not actually the one walking. She was being carried over someone’s shoulder like a bag of rice. She was too close to the person to see them as a whole, but she could still tell who it was. The person’s scent and the feel of the person’s skin were both nostalgic. But something was wrong. It was like the difference between someone who was sleeping and someone who was dead.
Marian finally managed to open her mouth.
No response came. The man who had once been her comrade walked silently. Even in that blizzard, he did not shiver or even get goose bumps.
Marian Slingeneyer knew what had happened.
The Magic God spoke bluntly.
“The difference between living and dead is a subtle one.”
“So we have new member of the Einherjar.”
It was an almost identical technique to the human modifications Marian carried out. Except this one specialized in corpses. Gold was put into the important parts of the human body and the corpse could be controlled without it decomposing.
The Magic God sounded bored as she spoke.
“Please tell me you aren’t going to complain like those in Baggage City. You know, something like ‘How dare you do that when that teacher was determined to the point of dying to accomplish his goal’.”
Marian did not have enough energy left to shout even if she wanted to.
Something definitive had been lost from the world.
“What happened to those that made that complaint? Did you make them part of that army of the dead too?”
“No. As usual, someone got in my way.”
Someone got in her way.
For Othinus, the number of people who could do that was quite limited.
“Did the failure…Did Ollerus appear?”
“Currently, when I face him, it always ends in a tie. That’s just how things are set up. I will need to do something about him too at some point.”
Her one weakness.
A threat greater than Imagine Breaker.
However, Othinus’s expression did not change as she spoke. For her, it was likely similar to looking at a puzzle she already knew how to solve. She did not need to think about it. She only had more work that required physical exertion like cleaning a messy room.
Marian Slingeneyer asked a question while feeling an unnatural warmth from the corpse that did not decompose.
“What about the holism?”
“Since Imagine Breaker shattered something, something like what we wanted was there. However, there are a few barriers we must get through before we can accomplish that phenomenon with a single brain. To be honest, I do not think a mere human can do it.”
“If we need someone who is more than human, can’t you just do it?”
“A Magic God is a part of the world of magic. I do not want to mix in esper powers as well.”
The holistic esper powers were different from Academy City’s, so it was possible no side effects would occur. However, Othinus still seemed cautious. She was the Magic God that stood above all others, but she was cautious.
After a bit of silence, Marian said, “Then what is our next target?”
“We acquired the furnace in Hawaii, the information on the spear should be going well, and we will likely be able to collect the specimen we need for the holism. This specimen must hold properties that surpass those of a normal human. Also, this person must not be a Saint or Valkyrie that is supported by magic. Nor can the person have undergone Academy City’s esper development. Not many natural specimens like that exist.”
“Do you know where a person like that is?”
“Academy City,” said Othinus.
And then she added one more thing.
“In a windowless building. This specimen is sleeping quietly within one of the core structures supporting that large building.”
Kamijou Touma’s consciousness flickered in and out.
He had lost consciousness due to the intense pain from having his arm crushed and severed without anesthetic and the shock from losing so much blood at once. That was what had happened. But something was odd. Even though his heart was still beating irregularly, the cause of it all was gone. Completely gone. He could tell when he weakly looked over to his right hand.
His right hand was…
He tried to open his mouth and speak, but a dry scratchy noise was all that came out. He had definitely received that damage. In fact, it was still wreaking havoc within his body. And yet his arm was connected. For his arm alone, it was as if nothing had happened.
“Amazing. If it had been cut off with a sharp blade, that would be one thing. But it was completely crushed. Normally, not even the bone would have connected, much less the nerves.”
Someone else spoke.
“It was the same when I did it. That is the proof that the current generation Imagine Breaker is still attached to him. There is meaning in that right hand belonging to him. To put it one way, the right hand is only the right hand when it is growing from his right shoulder.”
“I wonder if they realized that.”
“Who knows. They may just have wanted to hurry up the next generation. After all, Kamijou Touma’s disposition is difficult for Gremlin to use. It would be faster if they transferred it to something else. Of course, that’s only if their objective is Imagine Breaker.”
“Theoretically, it may indeed be faster to use Imagine Breaker with her nature as a Magic God being too strong and getting in the way.”
Still collapsed on the ground, Kamijou Touma stared up at the ceiling.
Someone peered down at him.
He tried to ask a question, but someone else cut in first.
“He found me like this, too.”
“Come to think of it, you too had lost your right arm. This one seems to have reconnected though.”
The first person then replied as if he had known what Kamijou was going to ask.
He said it in a casual voice.
“I’m Ollerus, the man who should have become a Magic God.”
The construction of a point of contact.
A clear connection.
That great uncertain element casually appeared even though it was unclear whether he should really be meeting Kamijou Touma, the owner of Imagine Breaker.
Ollerus continued speaking to Kamijou as he lay on the ground.
“It will probably take some time until that right hand that fixed itself is back to normal. But thanks to the nature of that right hand, Fiamma and I cannot do much. Anything that would help with the pain would simply be negated.”
Kamijou Touma moved his mouth and uttered another noise in a cracking voice.
Ollerus assumed he was asking for healing or pain relief despite knowing it was useless. Ollerus could not blame him since his right hand had been severed and healed over the course of twenty or so minutes.
But that was not what Kamijou wanted.
He finally managed a trembling voice.
“There…must still be…people waiting to be rescued in Baggage City. Even if the Kiharas and Gremlin have withdrawn, the scars they left remain. I need to…I need to save those people that I did not arrive soon enough to save…”
Hearing that, Ollerus gave a slight smile.
And he spoke.
“Then I will not refrain from overworking you. First up is the analysis and re-servicing of the people Marian Slingeneyer left behind. A portion of the soldiers she used as well as Cendrillon who was turned into a table can be turned back into their normal forms with your right hand and our intellect.”
“I…survived…” muttered someone utterly insignificant.
Standing in the -20 degree blizzard was Shar Berylan. Of the soldiers protecting Baggage City, he had no idea how many had survived (the network between soldiers was down, so he knew something wasn’t right), but it seemed he had been chosen to be one of them.
He himself did not know why that was.
Had he benefited from not approaching the center of the storm? Was he simply more skilled than he thought he was? Or had he merely been lucky?
“End combat. I repeat, end combat! The higher ups will decide everything from here on out. Assume any further aggressive actions will put us in an even more unfavorable situation!”
He had been hearing plausible things over the sub radio frequencies outside the network, but there was meaning in hearing it as an official order from the higher ups. Things were truly over. Assuming of course that all those who had fought seriously were not buried below the snow and there were actually more people to hear the transmission.
Shar wondered what he would do now that he had survived.
He had been hired by Baggage City and the Anti-Academy City Science Guardians, but they had clearly been destroyed. Even if the higher ups reformed, Shar swore silently that he would not respond to their summons. Academy City was a monster. He had thought the rumors were exaggerated, but the reality was five or even ten times worse.
A bit away from Shar’s position, something had fallen into the snow. Even in the blizzard, it had not been completely covered by the snow, so it stuck out unnaturally.
“Is that the remains of an Academy City bomber?”
Naturally, that would make it a collection of technology. Shar had no idea how to handle something like that, but there would be people who would want it. And he could use some money for retirement. He was lucky. The luck that had gotten him through that battle was still with him.
Thinking that, Shar reached out for the black fragment that was just big enough to hold in both arms.
“Hurry, hurry. If the markers wear out, we’ll have to dig up all this thick snow. Recover it all before then.”
Shar frantically hid behind a scrapped vehicle. A number of powered suits had appeared with sluggish motions. …Was that even the right term for them? Whatever they were, they looked like twisted dragonfly or scorpion costumes and they walked through the blizzard like a joke.
He wondered why they spoke directly to each other rather than using a radio.
Perhaps they were simply so un-humanlike that they would lose a sense of who they were without that humanlike behavior.
“This goes for everything from the Academy City side and the Anti-Academy City Science Guardians side. Whether it is still usable or it is destroyed, gather everything. The Data Pheromone capillaries in the damaged items are made to burst. Follow the smell and recover them before the marker disappears.”
“What do we do if anyone interferes?”
“Eliminate them. It does not matter if they know what they have or not. Even if they think they have a piece of a UFO or believe it to be an OOPArt, blow them to smithereens. The markers are weak to high heat, so the flames may have weakened the scent. Be careful.”
Shar Berylan pulled back his outstretched arm and quickly moved away from the scraps.
The speed with which he made such changes may have been why he had survived.
A while after the turmoil in Baggage City had ended, a certain person arrived. She was a young woman that wore a ready-made cheap suit. She looked as if she were heading in for a job interview. However, the documents in the large envelope she held all held top secret information that not even the leader of an entire nation was allowed to view.
She was in control of something on the global level.
The old man who had merely trembled deep within Baggage City was no match for her.
The true tops of Baggage City and the Anti-Academy City Science Guardians had been completely crushed by the Kiharas. This old man was only the one who set the policies of the giant organization. When a young woman that took on the world was visiting him, that old men’s defeat was already certain.
It was so certain that the right to decide had fallen to him.
Everyone above him had been utterly destroyed.
“Now then,” said the woman. “I hope you now understand just how dangerous the things we hold in Academy City are. For that purpose, we lost three…no, four Kiharas. But I suppose that is a fair cost for such a demonstration. The #2, Kakine Teitoku, also acquired a technique to form human cells using Dark Matter, the loss has already been compensated for.”
The number of victims had not even been 1/1000 of the number the woman had expected.
Most likely, it was due to the actions of the irregular Kihara that the spectators outside of the battle had remained unharmed.
The woman could not display it in simple numbers, so she was a little unsure if the fear had gotten across adequately. However, the old man was surprised by something else.
“Yes. A fair cost for getting across without words that these Anti-Academy City grumblings are not only worthless but actually have a negative effect.”
As she smoothly spoke, the woman pointed at the documents she had spread out on the luxurious table.
She tapped at what she pointing at.
“Don’t tell me you thought those were the only Kiharas.”
“If there are more, I am afraid but it has the opposite effect,” the old man said after just barely working up an almost nonexistent bit of courage. “If Academy City has more of those things, it is worse than we thought. This is a danger to the world! We must stand up to them for the sake of good. Especially now that you have shown us what they are!!”
“What a pain…”
The woman in the suit brought her hand to her forehead in annoyance.
She then shook her head.
“You have it backwards.”
“What do you think the Kiharas are? Please don’t give me some hackneyed response about them being an elite force created by Academy City.”
She pushed a few of the documents aside with her index finger to reveal another document buried beneath them.
She summarized what it said.
“It is a type of side effect. When people wish to misuse a field of pure science, someone appears to actually do it. That is what a Kihara is. Currently, most of the world’s cutting edge technology is held by Academy City. That is why the Kiharas are concentrated in Academy City. By concentrating them, they can be controlled.”
“But if that concentration in Academy City is destroyed and science is scattered throughout the world, Kiharas will naturally start cropping up all over the world. They are currently bound to a single bloodline, but that is not a necessity. If you Anti-Academy City Science Guardians expand, the world will be overrun by Kiharas along with the technology. Academy City will be unable to control that.”
There was one simple example.
The heretical Kihara that had appeared in Baggage City. Kihara Kagun, the member of Gremlin who had gone by the name Bersi.
It may have been because he joined with Gremlin that they had an environment that allowed them to use scientific technology.
But it may not have just been that.
Kihara Kagun may have been destined to join Gremlin for the very reason that Gremlin planned to reinforce their magic with scientific technology.
“Now then, old man. The Anti-Academy City Science Guardians were created in the name of not allowing Academy City to continue with its tyranny, but are you prepared to stick with that ideal of yours even if it creates a world that will be swallowed up by tons of naturally occurring Kiharas?”
The woman held out a single piece of paper.
It was a contract with simple contents.
Just by signing the bottom of the paper, the fight would be over for the old man and the others on his side.
In the form of defeat, of course.
Really, it was nothing more than a ritual to let the old man and the others know about the already decided outcome.
“You…” squeezed out the old man as he held the fountain pen in a trembling hand. “You speak of these Kiharas so easily. Who are you?”
In response, the woman gave a slight smile. She grabbed the white coat she had folded and placed over the back of her chair. She spread it out and put it on. It was no ordinary coat. It was a lab coat.
“I am a Kihara, too. Kihara Yuiitsu. I am one of those who will always appear as long as humans use science.”
That woman who had written off the loss of four Kiharas as a small sacrifice left Baggage City with a single piece of paper in hand.
She did it so easily.
It felt like nothing more than someone building a fence on the weekend after their dog had escaped from the yard.
With that, the mayhem came to an end.